- FUN FEATURES
After two weeks of testimony from a litany of witnesses, state prosecutors are expected to rest their case against accused killer Joshua Komisarjesvky later today.
Proceedings began on Sept. 19 with prosecuting attorneys laying out their case against Komisarjevsky, who is accused of killing three Cheshire women — Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her daughters, Hayley, 17, and Michaela, 11 — during a home invasion on July 23, 2007. Steven Hayes, Komisarjevsky's accomplice, was charged with similar crimes last year and was convicted on all but one count. He received the death penalty.
The case has hinged not on whether Komisarjevsky was involved in the home invasion but, rather, whether he was responsible for the deaths of the three women. Komisarjevsky has admitted to breaking into the home with Hayes, beating Dr. William Petit, the sole survivor of the attack, with a baseball bat, holding the three women hostage, planning to extort money from the family, and sexually molesting Michaela Petit. However, he has denied that he wanted anyone to be killed and has stated that Hayes was the one who poured gasoline throughout the house and ultimately lit the match. Hayley and Michaela Petit died as a result of that fire while Hawke-Petit had been raped and strangled to death by Hayes before the blaze was ignited.
The defense is expected to call a few witnesses after the prosecution rests, but it is unknown as to who they will be as no witness list was revealed before the trial. However, it is believed that the defense may very well rest itself by the end of this week, and that the jury may begin to deliberate after that or early next week.
If Komisarjevsky is found guilty, the trial will move into the penalty phase where jurors may be deciding on the death penalty.
For more on this, continue to check back to The Cheshire Herald website throughout the week, and look for an indepth story on the proceedings in this Thursday's Herald.